R2 certified companies should be expecting and preparing for more rigorous audits by their certifying bodies in 2017. Equipped with a better understanding of the electronics recycling industry as a whole, and how to audit the R2 Standard in particular, auditors will be able to more effectively evaluate how facilities are conforming to R2 requirements. More rigorous auditing will further strengthen the R2 program and instill greater confidence in users of recycling services.
To prepare, it is recommended that R2 certified facilities conduct their own rigorous internal audit to ensure all requirements of the R2 standard are being properly implemented and met. It is important that the person conducting the internal audit be competent to correctly assess conformance. Facilities without the proper personnel to conduct a thorough internal audit should consider enlisting the help of a consultant, an outside auditor, or additional internal auditor training to help them prepare.
There may be cases where auditors identify non-conformances that were not identified in previous audits. If a facility disagrees with an auditor’s finding of a non-conformance, the facility should follow the Certification Body’s appeals process. SERI’s role is to clarify requirements when necessary – not to make judgements of conformance or to arbitrate between a recycler and the auditor.
So far, more than 75 auditors have completed the new auditor training. All auditors will be required to complete the training and pass the final exam prior to the August 31, 2017 deadline.